AAAS 2023 Book Award Winners

The AAAS Book Awards Committee and its panel of jurors has officially completed the 2023 book awards cycle. Many thanks to the AAAS staff for facilitating the nomination process and publicity, and to our exemplary judges who reviewed dozens of submissions within a 5-month period. The AAAS Book Awards are only possible through the active participation and volunteerism of members, as well as presses and authors. 

The AAAS Book Awards is an opportunity for a book to be publicly recognized as exceptional and deserving of special recognition. It’s also a process that allows our association to deeply appreciate the years of research, writing, analyzing, and theorizing infused in the projects represented. The books nominated prove the vibrancy of Asian American studies scholarship and writing, and the field’s indispensable contribution to understandings of everyday survival, world-historic change, planetary struggle, axes of solidarity, and much more. 

To all those nominated: Thank you for the work and giving the process such depth. To the awardees: Congratulations and we look forward to highlighting your book in Long Beach!

Jan Padios (Chair)
Falu Bakrania
Francis Tanglao Aguas
Michelle Dinh

Creative Writing: Poetry

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT — Susan Nguyen, Dear Diaspora (Nebraska)

Creative Writing: Prose

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT — Eugene Lim, Search History (Coffee House)

HONORABLE MENTION — Julietta Singh, The Breaks: An Essay (Coffee House)


OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT — Lily Cho, Mass Capture: Chinese Head Tax and the Making of Non-Citizens (McGill-Queens)

HONORABLE MENTION — Neel Ahuja, Planetary Specters: Race, Migration, and Climate Change in the Twenty-First Century (University of North Carolina) 

HONORABLE MENTION — Ma Vang, History on the Run: Secrecy, Fugitivity, and Hmong Refugee Epistemologies (Duke University Press) 


OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT — Eric C. Wat, Love Your Asian Body: AIDS Activism in Los Angeles (University of Washington)

HONORABLE MENTION — Anna Pegler-Gordon, Closing the Golden Door: Asian Migration and the Hidden History of Exclusion at Ellis Island (University of North Carolina)

HONORABLE MENTION — Vernadette Vicuña Gonzalez, Empire′s Mistress, Starring Isabel Rosario Cooper (Duke)

Media, Performance, and Visual Studies

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT — Việt Lê, Return Engagements: Contemporary Art’s Traumas of Modernity and History in Sai Gon and Phnom Penh (Duke) 

HONORABLE MENTION — Hentyle Yapp, Minor China: Methods, Materialism, and the Aesthetic (Duke) 

Literary Studies

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT — Erin Suzuki, Ocean Passages: Navigating Pacific Islander and Asian American Literatures (Temple) 

HONORABLE MENTION — David Roh, Minor Transpacific: Triangulating American, Japanese, and Korean Fictions (Stanford) 

Social Sciences

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT — Nadia Kim, Refusing Death: Immigrant Women and the Fight for Environmental Justice in LA (Stanford)

HONORABLE MENTION — Thuy Linh Nguyen Tu, Experiments in Skin: Race and Beauty in the Shadows of Vietnam (Duke)